The River Spoke to Me
How often have you been in a situation where you had this thought “I didn’t even think about it, I just did it and it worked out perfectly?”
As human beings we often forget that instincts are equally as important as process thinking. Instincts are deep within us and come from a place that is in the absence of explanation. Because of this, we logically want to analyze it and rationalize how we were able to make a decision based on an internal voice. Instincts come out in an action that we make without much thinking at all. Sometimes these instincts launch from knowledge we are in the process of obtaining and sometimes they are from a deeper place, one of natural human intuitions. Either one can be intimidating to trust but the less we fight it the stronger and more reliable those intuitions become.
It can be scary to feel proud of something that we didn’t feel like we “earned” by means of hard work. Generally instinct comes to us in a split second and feels like knowledge above what we feel we know, as if it was a “download” from somewhere else. Some intuitions pronounce themselves into the present from observations of the past that later we come to remember. Truly though, instincts are in our make up and live in our DNA coding.
In yoga we often speak of tapping into the energy flow within us and reaching into those deeper places in the mind, the same places that instincts live. We utilize instincts to find this energy flow within the body. While there are many tools and instructions to learning yoga poses and how to do them safely once those are in place the last and most essential piece is to listen closely to the voice of heart and the gut where instincts and energy flow communicate with us. This is not a time to over-analyze or reason as long as we are practicing safe yoga. Listening to the voice that tells us if something is uncomfortable we then allow the instincts to come through and help us get to place of comfort and move into the flow of energy.
Once we find this flow of energy within us and move with it there is a euphoric feeling that comes over us that is like nothing else we can experience in life. This euphoric feeling helps to build self confidence, love for ourselves and our lives in a very subtle way – subtle yet profound. As the sun peaked in my window last Saturday morning I was filled with excitement knowing that I was going to be taking my first course with Cali Collective and learning to kayak. I was ready to be confident in a whole new way and feel the flow of energy within me and all around me embraced by the river. I was curious of how instincts would play out through this experience and if they would be apart of how I would make decisions or if would be solely on the instructions I was given. Later to find out that it would be a beautiful mixture of both.
There were moments leading up to this experience that I had some fear of the unknown arise. I noticed that more often than not, excitement would replace the fear. My intuition told me that there would be similarities and practices as a yoga teacher that I would be able to apply to learning this new whitewater sport. Keeping myself in this positive and trusting place I was able to embrace the whole weekend with the instructors and students with perseverance and joy.
There were many lessons that I learned in this weekend and one of them was learning that I can trust myself to make the right decisions even in something that I am just learning. There may be times that I make mistakes but honestly, most of mistakes were made when I was over-thinking and not trusting that inner voice that said to go just a bit further before you edge into the eddy line or use just a bit more strength from your core in a stern draw rather then a sweep. Time and time again the voice came and I would learn over and over again all weekend that if I listen to this voice I would flow with the river.
Something magical happened on the second day after I had released doubt my first initial thought..the voice of the river spoke to me. I was so in the flow of universal energy that I could hear the river say “come this way” I could see the natural flow of the river in whole new way and feel energy flowing all around me in that euphoric feeling that I was talking about earlier. I flowed down the “green tongue” of river and sailed into the eddy so smoothly. This time it was honestly the most profound that I have ever felt it. Even now as I write this I can feel it…the energy of the river and my energy becoming one all because I listened to the voice. This voice is soft and does not demand it will reward you with experiences of new heights that nothing else can.
When opportune arises and instincts kick-in, why not take the chance to listen to them and see what you experience? It just might be euphoric and profound unlike any other experience you have had in life yet!
She designs each class so that anyone can enjoy the art of yoga and aims to humbly be a conduit through which kindness and teachings can flow in her classes. We are honored to have her part of Cali Collective!
All words and images copyright California Women’s Watersport Collective 2019. All rights reserved.